Origin of the name ‘Tucson’

From the Librarian Files

Where did the name of our city come from?

According to Byrd Granger in Arizona's Names: X Marks the Place, "The name of the city of Tucson derives from that given to Sentinel Mountain by [Tohono O’odham] Indians, Ts-iuk-shan, referring to the fact that the base of the mountain is darker than its summit. Hodge also says the Tu-uk-so-on means "black base.”.... Indians customarily name locations for nearby landmarks, hence the name of the now-vanished Indian community at the base of Sentinel Mountain. Spanish pronunciation yielded Tuqui Son or the current Tucson."

Arizona's Names


Granger, Byrd H.  Arizona's Names: X Marks the Place. [Tucson, Ariz.?] : Falconer Pub. Co. c1983. Page 630.

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